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tv   Newsline 30min  KCSMMHZ  February 28, 2013 6:00am-6:30am PST

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welcome to nhk world "newsline." iran's chief nuclear envoy says negotiations over his country's nuclear program may have reached a turning point. saeed jalili wrapped up talks in almaty, kazakhstan, with delegates from six world powers. they offered to ease economic sanctions if the iranians gave them some concessions in return. >> translator: the new proposal is more realistic that those in the past. i consider the proposal to be positive.
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it can help us achieve our goals and satisfy our people. >> jalili met with representatives of the five permanent members of the security council and germany. they want scientists to stop enriching uranium to 20% purity. beyond that point it is relatively easy to turn it into weapons-grade material. jalili is open to talking about the purity question but he's against shutting down the controversial enrichment facility known as fordo. >> translator: it is impossible for us to accept the suspension of uranium enrichment. all the iranian people are united in support of nuclear development. we will continue the development because it is our right. >> the delegates agreed to meet again in almaty in april. u.s. secretary of state john kerry says the latest talks were useful. kerry said he hoped iranian leaders will respond positively.
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>> we look to iran to carefully review an incredible and confidence building steps and put it on the table. >> kerry said u.s. president barack obama made clear his determination to implement his policy that iran will not have a nuclear weapon. pope benedict xvi says he will have unconditional reverence and obedience for his successor. he is just hours away from officially retiring as the head of the catholic church after spending nearly eight years in the post. the pope greeted cardinals on his final day. he told them their advice had been important and he said he was happy to have spent time with them. vatican officials say the cardinals will meet in early march to set the date for a conclave to elect a new pope. benedict xvi is resigning because of old age and poor health. no pope has done that since 1415.
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he is scheduled to fly by helicopter to the papal retreat in a suburb of rome. his resignation goes into effect at 8:00 p.m. local time. weather authorities are urging residents of beijing and surrounding areas to avoid any outdoor activities. people have been struggling with polluted air for months now. cars and factories have spewed out tiny particles. known as pm2.5. weather officials warn levels of the pollutants are 10 to 20 times above world health organization guidelines. that's left people in beijing and neighboring hebei province in a fog. >> translator: it must be very hazardous for my skin and lungs. i bought a lot of masks. >> airlines have canceled many domestic flights at airports in hebei province because pilots can't see through the haze. south korean defense ministry officials have warned
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that north korea is likely to conduct a large-scale national military drill early in march. a defense ministry spokesperson told reporters pyongyang ramped up its training to an unusual level. the drills included artillery, air attack, special warfare and other exercises. he said the north tends to provoke the south whenever south korean politics change. if they go ahead, the north's drills will coincide with joint south korean/u.s. exercises. the two nations are scheduled to hold their regular joint drills from the beginning of march through the end of april to enhance the mobility of their air, ground and naval forces. north korean officials have strongly condemned the plan saying if the exercises go ahead, the two countries' forces will experience miserable destruction.
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the president and ceo of boeing's commercial airplane division has visited japan's transport ministry with an apology and an explanation. he outlined a plan that may get the troubled 787 dreamliner back in the air. the president of boeing commercial airlines met the transport minister. he apologized for the problems the dream liners have caused two of japan's leading airlines. his visit comes about a month after a series of battery problems forced the grounding of 787s worldwide. ministery officials said conner outlined a proposal for improving battery safety that the company submitted to the u.s. federal aviation administration last week. the plan includes a design change aimed at preventing lithium ion battery cells from overheating and catching fire.
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the ministry's plans to examine the proposal before discussing the matter with the u.s. authority. conner told reporters that his company engineers have considered every possible scenario involving battery problems and then worked out measures to deal effectively with the cases. >> what we did today was discuss the solution that we are looking at that could be a final solution to get the airplanes back in the air and flying again. >> in january, a 787 operated by all nippon airways made an emergency landing in japan after a battery started emitting smoke in the cockpit. another dreamliner operated by japan airlines had a battery catch fire at an airport in boston. japan's prime minister says he will try to revive the economy and increase incomes by expanding farm and food exports. shinzo abe laid out his plans on thursday in a policy speech
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before the lower house. >> translator: the more affluent people around the world become, the more popular japanese food is. so the government should adopt an aggressive policy to expand farm and food exports. >> abe argued japan should be involved in setting the rules for international trade and investment. he said it's the government's responsibility to decide whether to join the negotiation for the transpacific partnership free trade agreement. >> translator: japan and the united states restored their close bilateral alliance when i met with president barack obama last week. >> abe said the u.s. military realignment in japan will be implemented in line with the 2006 agreement. he noted his government will do what it can to reduce the burden on okinawa which hosts the majority of american bases. abe voiced his willingness to improve ties with china and south korea but he urged chinese
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leaders to use restraint over a territorial dispute involving islands japan controls in the east china sea. he said the use of force to change the current situation will accomplish nothing. the prime minister said he hopes to strengthen ties with russia by visiting the country later this year. he said the relationship has great potential. abe said it's unacceptable that north korean authorities went ahead with their recent nuclear test. he said he will work with other countries to deal harshly with them. the prime minister spent his first two months in office focused on jump starting the economy. he's betting his pick for the next bank of japan governor will push his agenda forward. haruhiko kuroda has been nominated as the nominee. he's president of the asian development bank. kuroda was once a senior finance ministry official. the 68-year-old has head of the adb since 2005. it approved by the diet, he will take over the boj post. the prime minister put forward
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the names of the two deputy governors. they are gakushuin university professor kikuo iwata and boj executive director hiroshi nakaso. it needs support from the opposition parties as the ruling coalition does not have the majority in the upper house. many members of the major opposition democratic party are of japan are set to support abe's nominees. they say there isn't much doubt about kuroda's ability, especially his negotiating and management skills. asian development bank spokesperson announced kuroda is resigning from the top post of the manila-based institution on march 118th. u.s. tech giant apple has won a patent lawsuit in tokyo over south korea's samsung electronics.
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the ruling is the second in a series of court cases in japan involving smartphones and tablet computers. the tokyo district court on thursday ruled that apple does not infringe on samsung's patents for mobile data transfer technologies. presiding judge ichiro ataka upheld claims by apple's japanese operations. the ruling also rejected samsung's request for a ban on sales of some apple devices. the tokyo court upheld samsung's claims in a decision over a different technology last summer. court decisions on the mobile data transmission technologies have been split worldwide. last august apple's claims were upheld in the united states but samsung won in a south korean ruling. robotic engineers in japan are putting the final touches on an invention that's expected to take a giant leap forward for robot kind. they're getting ready to send
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the first talking robot into space. the plan is it will keep astronauts company during their long stays and give researchers ideas for how to help people who struggle with loneliness on earth. nhk world has the story. >> reporter: they can speak, they can play soccer, robots can do much more these days than ever before. this business in tokyo's neighborhood has some of the latest robot technology offered. >> translator: we have a variety of robots, cute ones with soothing functions and those controlled by radio. nowadays, robots are a lot closer to us in our daily lives. >> reporter: you won't find them in stores, though. it is called kirobo, a combination of the japanese word kibo meaning hope and robot. a group of academics and engineers have been developing it to send it to the international space station this summer. kirobo won't just visit the station, its mission is to help
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astronauts. many who stay in space for a long time suffer from loneliness. the people who made kirobo hope it will provide some company. a 30-centimeter tall robot weighs 1 kilogram. it's undergoing feasibility tests in the zero gravity state created inside an aircraft. before long researchers at a leading maker will equip it with the latest voice recognition technology. then it will be able to communicate in japanese. it will make the trip to the space station this summer. japanese astronaut koichi okawa will head there at the end of the year for a six-month stay. he'll do something no one's ever done in space before, speak with the robot. kirobo creators say he hopes the pair will become buddies. he and his colleagues are putting the finishing tos on
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the robot. >> translator: once it's in space, we won't be able to fix it. so we must make sure it's in perfect condition. i hope it reaches the station all right and starts working without any problems. >> reporter: project leaders are interested in seeing how effective kirobo is at keeping people company in space. they envision robots one day helping to alleviate loneliness on earth among the elderly and other members of society. a group of japanese researchers has applied for a government approval to conduct the world's first clinical trials of ips cells. the stem cells can develop into any type of body tissue. the scientists want to use the cells to help people with damaged retinas see more
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clearly. a research group led by the kobe institute plans to regenerate ips cells from the skin cells of patients. last year an unmanned spacecraft developed by a u.s. venture firm delivered supplies to the space station. mars is also in the sights of the u.s. government. president obama has announced a plan for a manned mission to mars by the 2030s.
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attention is now focused on how the latest projects will be financed and how the technical challenges will be overcome. a group of japanese researchers has applied for a government approval to conduct the world's first clinical trials of ips cells. the stem cells can develop into any type of body tissue. the scientists want to use the cells to help people with damaged retinas see more clearly. a research group led by the kobe institute plans to regenerate ips cells from the skin cells of patients. they will then cultivate the ips cells into retinal tissue and transplant it into six patients. >> translator: our goal is to develop new treatments for patients. the application in october is the first step towards the goal. it is significant that we are
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making progress in our medical techniques. >> reporter: kyoto professors developed human ips cells in 2007. he says he's gratified that it took the researchers only five years to reach this point. he says he respects their efforts to realize unprecedented medical treatments. japanese police say 2012 saw more than 1,000 cyber attacks aimed at stealing corporate data through the sending of virus-carrying e-mails. the national police agency on thursday released a report based on information chaired by some 4,900 companies using advanced information technology. the report says attackers have become more sophisticated in recent years. some new methods include making contact with the company posing as a job seeker and then sending a virus-infected resume. the report also notes that a growing number of attackers send viruses as compressed files protected bypass words to avoid detection by anti-virus software.
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police say the viruses are able to send stored data from the infected computers to the outside network through a third party computer. 26% of the stolen data was sent to the united states. 21% to china and 20% to japan. police believe the attacks are in violation of the country's illegal access law. people who operate the fukushima daiichi plant have apologized for failing to report their radiation exposure of their employees. the revelation raises questions over the safety of 20,000 people who have worked or are presently employed at the crippled plant. utilities in japan are legally obliged to measure individual radiation dosages of their workers and keep them under certain limits. power companies submit the data every year to a national database, but representatives of tokyo electric power company say they have filed no radiation figures for people who have
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worked at fukushima daiichi since the nuclear meltdown of march, 2011. tepco officials say it took time to transfer the data into electronic form because for some time after the accident workers recorded their radiation doses on paper. the officials say they will submit the data by the end of next month. australian federal police seized a ton of illegal stimulants in the largest ever methamphetamine bust. the drugs were hidden in a shipment from southeastern china. police say the drugs weigh 585 kilograms and have a street value of around $440 million u.s. dollars. they entered australia from the southern chinese city of shenzhen. police arrested three people, a singaporean, a man from hong kong and an australian. they came to collect the shipment from a storage facility in western sydney. a police spokesperson says the drug syndicate based in southeastern china may have been involved in the case. investigators are talking with
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authorities in china and say further arrests may follow in australia and abroad. they're one of the world's most persecuted minorities. rohingya muslims from western myanmar have been denied citizenship by the government and face sectarian violence that broke out last year. increasing numbers of them choose to flee by sea in rickety boats, but those who survive the dangerous voyage face another danger, ruthless human smugglers from southern thailand. >> reporter: the tide of rohingya refugees going to cross the sea is coming faster. they have reached here in just six months. these rohingyas were found at an isolated plantation in southern thailand. human smugglers con fined scores them for six weeks. >> translator: they hit us with wood, punched and kicked us.
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we were divided into small groups by the smugglers. we were afraid about what would happen to us. >> reporter: rohingyas fleeing myanmar initially head for malaysia, hoping to find protection among its muslim majority. many drown at sea and others face detention by thai authorities. but there's another threat. human smugglers catch them what want to go to malaysia and hide them in southern thailand. >> translator: after we were caught at sea, smugglers carried us away in sacks and put us in a truck. they threatened us. they tried to force us to pay $2,000. but because we have no money, they beat us. >> reporter: we travelled to an island that's become one of the main smuggling groups to malaysia. it is just ten kilometers away. one night in january, some 50 rohingyas were kept. this is a cabin where they
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survived a dangerous sea journey. scores of people were hiding with no idea where to go or what the future would hold. >> reporter: they were confined without food or water. smugglers took what money they had and abandoned them. on the island we met the man who works inside the smuggling network. he says this shadowy illegal group has never been busier. >> translator: we know rohingyas can't live in myanmar anymore. if we promise to take them to malaysia, they'll quickly pay large smuggling fees. if we don't like them, we sometimes just throw them into the sea.
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>> reporter: the man gives details about the people operating the human smuggling network. >> translator: there are burmese and thais in the smuggling network. i'm sure both military and police officers are also tied up in this. without them, smuggling would be impossible. >> reporter: allegations about the involvement of officers have made headlines in local media. authorities say it's untrue. >> translator: this kind of business can't be done by individuals acting alone.
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they do it as a network. but an investigation by the police has shown our people were not involved. >> reporter: rohingyas risk a dangerous sea voyage but they are faced with harsh reality, there is no safe place to go. >> translator: i left my family in myanmar and i don't know what has happened to them. i want to know why our life is so hard. why do we have to struggle like this just to live? i don't know why. >> reporter: u.n. refugee agency is urging the international community to protect the rohingyas, but with few countries willing or able to act, these unwanted people will continue to set out to sea, not knowing what fate awaits them. nhk world, southern thailand. it warmed up in tokyo almost feeling like spring. rachel. >> it was a beautiful day today and it certainly felt like spring was just around the corner, but i'm afraid it is going to get colder before we can really say that spring has come. we have a low-pressure system at the moment dropping snow across northeastern china, about 15 centimeters or so, along the cold front that moves through south korea, it's going to be rain rather than snow.
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but in behind the system, that very frigid air is going to fall into place, so the same thing will happen to japan. friday into saturday we'll see rain moving through. but after the system passes, it is going to get very chilly again. there is widespread rain also impacting the shanghai region back in towards chongching along the river and some of it a little on the heavy side. shanghai will pick up some heavy rain and temperatures will be falling into the next couple of days. let's have a look at what is happening with seoul. on friday, already impacted by that cooler air. back up to just about average by sunday. meanwhile tokyo a rainy day, but 16 degrees on friday, falling back down to 9 by sunday. heading into the americas, high pressure is dominating much of the continent and we will, however, be seeing some rain up towards the northwest. now, rain rather than snow most of this precipitation, but as it pushes into the intermountain west, it will be melting that
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snowpack. when it does happen so rapidly, we can have the risk of avalanches and there are some warnings posted for that. out towards the northeast, you'll be seeing snow starting to taper off across the great lakes region, but it pushes into new england. you could see about 25 centimeters of fresh snow and it will be really blown about by some very strong winds, reducing visibility even down to around zero in some places. so definitely making for dangerous travel and it would be a good idea to check the status of your flights before heading to the airport. you will be noticing a warmup towards the west, and then a cooldown to the east as our jetstream snakes up towards the north there and then down into the south just like that. and here's the impact. 1 degree in denver on thursday and then by sunday up to 14 degrees. meanwhile jacksonville falls from 21 on thursday down to about 12 on sunday. so do watch for those rapid warmups and cooldowns. into europe, most of the
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continent is experiencing dry and pleasant weather, but up towards the north you'll be seeing some wet and windy weather across that western coast of norway. there's also a low impacting the northeast and this one is going to be really bringing some frigid air with it, dropping your temperatures quite significantly by friday and into saturday. down to the southwest, we are seeing some heavy snow impacting spain. it's the heaviest snow you've seen actually all winter, just as we approach the end of the season. about 50 centimeters for eastern portions and maybe you can even add on to that by friday morning. from the afternoon hours we'll start to see that system passing in towards italy. now here are your temperatures. we have 10 degrees in madrid, 7 for paris as well as london with
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1 in stockholm and 1 degree in moscow, but falling to about minus 6 on your saturday. that's a very rapid cooldown we were talking about towards the northeast. here now is your extended forecast. we're back in 30 minutes with more of the latest. i'm gene otani in tokyo.
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